why it’s good if you hate your job

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I’ve been thinking about writing this post for a long time. And rather than go into a long story, I think it’s best to just keep it short and sweet:

If you hate your job, you are more likely to leave it and truly ask yourself what you want to do, what you are meant to do.

If you liked your day job justthismuch more, then you may never end up leaving. Never end up asking the difficult questions that lead to a purpose driven life.

So every time you go into work on a Monday and dread being there, remind yourself that it’s a good thing.

You are lucky that you have a job that sucks so much that it begs you to ask the question: how can I make my life better, deeper, and more purposeful?

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  1. Jess

    Hey everyone! I know this post is a bit stronger than most for me. Feeling feisty I suppose. But I want to make this clear:

    If you don’t hate your job, if you love it and enjoy coming to work each day – then this post is not for you! It’s meant to be an encouraging word to those that dread going to work each day – not for those that love their career.


  2. Brittany

    I absolutely agree. I love what I do, but I am so sick of my job at Starbucks. It just makes me feel, even deeper, that I need to keep going, to tough it out with The Home Ground. Other factors will soon lead to my being able to quit (my fiance graduating and being able to work full time!), but someday I may not have to have a job at all outside of HG. That’s why it’s good to not like your job.

    Great post, Jess!

  3. S.E.Minegar

    i don’t love my job, but i don’t hate it either. i am just happy to have a job right now. i appreciate the learning experiences even if it’s not my dream position. sometimes you have to take some of the good with the bad.


  4. mandie

    Love this Jess! I don’t hate my job, but I know that every morning, it’s hard to come in because I know that there IS a job that I’d much rather be doing- working for myself! I’m working on building my business up so that one day I can! 🙂

    Thanks for sharing & encouraging!!

  5. Helena

    While I agree that currently some people may have to take a job that’s not ideal (to maintain a salary and healthcare in an uncertain economy), I like to look at it as giving those who are unsatisfied with their current positions more time to explore and think about what comes next. I don’t think it’s ever easy to take that leap.

  6. Jess

    @ Diane: I’m glad you like it, lady!

    @ Brittany: I’m so happy to hear you are where you are with such intention! It sounds like you have a great perspective on this phase of your career :).

    @ S.E.M: I totally agree. But the best part of being there right now is that it gives you the time to think about what you really want to do, ask yourself those unsettling questions about purpose, that will help you leave when/if the time is right. This is just a phase for you, not your life :). I’m excited to see where life leads you!

    @ Mandie: Thank you! You totally get this. It’s so true- have patience and courage to take action when the time is right!

    @ Helena: I totally agree, the next step always seems scary and uncertain until it’s taken. And you are right, an unfulfilling job is a great place to think about the next step with more security. But the main point is that when the time is right, we challenge ourselves to step into our purpose and the unknown with faith and meaning. 🙂

  7. Maggie Rose

    Jess, this is so so so true. I’m waaay past the “this can be a useful learning experience” and even “I’m lucky to have a job”… (like 2 years past) which for me were just excuses I was using to not take bigger chances toward working for myself. Even when I HAD to keep this job to stay in our home & keep everyone fed, I’ve never doubted that this is temporary and simply a bill-payer. No motivation to get moving on your own projects like wasting time on someone else’s (who doesn’t appreciate the work you do).

  8. Becca

    I agree that it’s not necessarily a bad thing. I disliked (not hated) my job for a while. Back in december – I quit and moved cross-country. It’s been great, I love my new city and I feel incredibly optimistic knowing that the world is my oyster and I’m finding my way to doing something that I love to do every day. However, the problem is – I just don’t know what that is! I’m having an awfully hard time figuring out my purpose and what I want to do. I look for jobs, but frequently get scared or deterred because I’m wary of ending up in ANOTHER job I dislike. Any advice on navigating your way through a career change or on finding your purpose?

  9. Clint

    So so so so true! Everyday we don’t like our day jobs just adds to the motivation we need bring Scared Panda to a full-time level.

  10. Thaís

    I couldn´t agree more, at this moment I´m on the second step, have already quit it, and I´m reflecting on what I really want to my life, which is not easy as well …

  11. Laura

    This is so true! I absolutely dreaded my job and was in tears about once a week but I learned more than I could imagine about what I did and did not want out of a job and the kind of employee I wanted to be. I learned more about myself in one year than in all my years of school. It definitely gave me the motivation to uproot/relocate and try my had at something new. Now I’m at a job I adore and love going to.

  12. Jess

    @ Maggie Rose: Lady, I love your fire! I can feel it growing each time we chat. Keep it up!

    @ Becca: Way to be an inspiration to so many! You are living life with intention. Congrats for taking a leap of faith. I don’t think there is an easy answer to finding your purpose but I do think this might be helpful: http://makeundermylife.com/what-to-do-when-you-dont-know-your-purpose-yet/.

    @ Clint: I’m happy to hear that!! Keep it up!

    @ Thaís: Definitely not easy to find out the next step – but keep having faith and following your gut.

    @ Laura: Awesome! You are living the dream!

    @ Stephanie: 🙂

  13. Carla

    I hated my corporate job and it’s just like you said – it lit a fire under me to live with purpose. Why spend so many precious days of this life doing something which I didn’t like with a single fiber of my being? I’m still figuring it out and I haven’t quite landed any”where” just yet but it’s exhilirating and amazing to know I’m doing it on my own terms. Love this post!

  14. Maddie

    I graduated from college in May 2009, when the economy was TANKING, and thus began the two hardest years of my life so far. I was happy to finally find employment, but I also found that cubicles and paper-filing weren’t exactly the stuff of dreams.

    But if I hadn’t had that experience right out of college, I wouldn’t have had to ask myself the hard questions so early in life. You’re totally right, Jess, and thanks for posting this reminder for all of us.

  15. Pilar

    I love this post. Although short, it’s spot on! I do have a hard time going to work, and I’m often reminding myself that this isn’t what I’m meant to do.

  16. Gina

    Perfect Jess, just perfect. I kinda disliked all of my day jobs and then I finally got one I despised. I hated every.single.day. and this forced me to follow my dreams.

    I have less money than I did when I forst graduated college, but I am happier than I have ever been. sometimes you just have to hit rock bottom :).

  17. Alexa

    I agree though – I don’t think this post is too harsh. In fact, I think it’s just right. That’s the way I feel about my job now; it’s pushing me to explore options and try and figure out what I was really meant to do. Thanks Jess!

  18. Lauren L.

    I can totally relate to this post. I was a teacher for five years and although I love working with children I was completely miserable last year. I was so unhappy that I quit my job and now I am back in graduate school full time getting my master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction. Although I don’t know if I will never teach again, my unhappiness gave me a kick in the butt to finally do what I wanted to do for myself professionally and educationally.

  19. Jill

    I couldn’t agree more… I had a job I kinda/sorta/mostly liked and would have stayed in it forever if the economy hadn’t had turned (it was real estate). Then I went to a job that I absolutely abhorred. And while I could use the excuse of “staying home with my kids” instead of working, we still took a huge financial hit as a family when I quit my job. I didn’t know what I wanted to do, but I knew there had to be something more meaningful out there. Almost three years later I am so glad I took the risk, I’m a better person for it and my family is stronger as well. I also have a new work-at-home career and am loving it!

  20. Jess

    @ Clara: I love your guts! Stephanie from the “what to do when you don’t know our purpose (yet) post is in the same boat and rocking the hustle too!

    @ Maddie: I’m so happy to hear you asked yourself the hard questions so early! I think this could save you a lot of time in the long run! Best of luck!

    @ Cathy: Great idea! I wonder how to make that happen… 🙂

    @ Pilar: Good! Keep up the job and tough questions, the answers will come.

    @ Gina: You are living the dream! I’m sure this isn’t always easy, but at least you are finding meaning and joy!

    @ Alexa: Awesome! Best of luck with the questioning…

    @ Lauren: Way to go! It’s great to hear that you adjusted your job based on the joy you weren’t feeling. I love that you had the guts to do something that was a better fit for you!

    @ Jill: Hey friend! You are my hero. I hope to be loving what I’m doing when I have kids the way you are. Love it. 🙂

  21. kelsey

    Thank you for this! It is so refreshing. My husband and I both want to do something different than what we’re doing now. We’re hustling! And your site has been very helpful to us in our journey. Thanks for what you do!

  22. Kat

    This is so true!!! I was in a job for nearly 2 years, just making it through each day and thinking to myself that I could just “tough it out” until my husband came down on new orders that would take us far far away.

    Out of the blue I came upon an opportunity to send my resume in for a job I was totally unqualified for (on paper anyway). If it wasn’t for how miserable I was in the other job I would have never taken the chance to change and now I am soooo glad I did. Now I find myself wishing my husband would get orders to stay.

  23. Sometimes having a job that you hate is the biggest kick in the pants that you need! I’m finally taking steps to doing what I really want, and that came after many boring days at work, tears and prayers. We need to remember to go for what we really want in life, we can’t afford to be, ‘just fine.” We should rise, and walk within our destiny. (I went a little deep but you all know what I mean.)

  24. trina

    Exactly right. I was in a job that i actually loved but the work environment was just plain old toxic due to a couple people. I was miserable, stressed, emotionally exhausted, and DREADED going there every day. I would slump into a pretty decent depression every sunday afternoon/evening just because i knew the next day i had to go back. But that pushed me to think about if this job was one that i wanted to stay in or what other things i might rather be doing. I started not just thinking about another job but what my dreams actually were. I got to a place where, even if the toxic elements of the workplace weren’t there, i knew i had to leave and try for my dreams, even if they didn’t pan out. So now I am “unemployed”, working towards many of the various dreams and i-wonders that live in my heart and am finding that door after door after door keeps opening for me. I am so excited to be on a path that is mine. Thanks for writing about all this. I found your blog just as i was at my wits end at work and starting to move towards quitting. It has been amazing as so many times you will write about something i have just thought about or done and it’s so affirming and encouraging. 🙂

  25. Stephanie

    Up top sister. Up top. I had a girlfriend tell me some similar advice ‘at least your pay is low, so it’s not a great loss when you do leave’ she said…sometimes there is pain in the truth and honesty you ask for, but in the end it’s what kicks you from behind and says get going! You have good work to do out there!

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